Mom Blogging Minute, with Jo-Lynne of Musings of a Housewife

Welcome to the second edition of “Mom Blogging Minute,” where I ask a burning question, and get answers from successful bloggers.

Today, we’re joined by Jo-Lynne, from Musings of a Housewife. I’ve been reading Jo-Lynne’s blog for almost two years, and she is an amazing woman! She also has a review blog, at, and designs blogs at DCR Design.

Sarah asked:

Mom Bloggers are having increased influence on the marketplace, as we do reviews, giveaways and promotions. You have been successful in working with companies and PR firms as a mom blogger and sharing your opinions, while keeping your blog entertaining and relational. What tips would you give a blogger on working with PR and companies without turning their blog into one big commercial?

Jo-Lynne said:

Great question! I think it comes down to one’s purpose for blogging and staying true to that, no matter what you are talking about. For me, I am first and foremost a diarist. My purpose in blogging is to entertain and build relationships with other moms based on shared experiences, laughter, and sometimes commiseration. 🙂

Writing is an outlet for me, and I enjoy sharing my stories and building a supportive community of women on my blog. I also love to shop and talk about products I find that I love (or hate) so product reviews came naturally to me. However, I did not want my blog to be one big infomercial, and my BlogHerAds agreement solved that problem for me. I’m not allowed to accept and keep products for review that retail for more than $40 so when I began to get offers to review higher priced products, I started a review blog.

I do believe it is possible to do both on one site, as long as you write about the products you are reviewing in the same style and tone as you write your other posts. I try to do this, even though I do most of my reviews on Reviewsings. I just write like I’m talking to my girlfriends (which I am!) and so no matter what I’m writing about, I maintain integrity of style.

What about you? Do you review products on your blog? Do you have any tips for striking a balance?

Digging Further: Chris Brogan wrote today about Blogger Relations (reviews) and Sponsored Content

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About Sarah Pinnix

I'm a mom, blogger, vlogger, libertarian. I love Jesus, and my husband, too. Social Media Strategist for a Non-Profit (All statements here are solely my own)


  1. oh amanda says:

    Good point, Jo-Lynne! I tend to be the kind of person that gushes about stuff I like anyway, so reviews are easy for me! LOL!

    Fun post, Sarah!


  2. I’m wanting to learn more about doing reviews! What happens if you get a product to review and you just hate it? don’t like it at all – what do you do then?



  3. Good Question, Tidymom! Usually they want you to contact them and let them know why you didn’t like it and give feedback. If you want, you can ask them if they still want you to write (they’ll probably say no) Some bloggers don’t bother posting about things they hate, but others feel it’s important let others know not to buy the product. I’m in the middle on that issue.


  4. Kimberly/Mom in the City says:

    Jo-Lynne is great. Thanks for featuring her!

    I review products on my blog. I tend to do reviews on one day of the week (Thursdays) so that my blog doesn’t get “bogged down” with them. Also, they must be relevant to my readers (who are primarily moms of preschoolers).


  5. Carolina Mama says:

    ProBlgoger is so great. Hey the Carolina Girls Rollcall is up! 🙂


  6. Musings of a Housewife says:

    If I don’t like a product, I always tell the person who sent it to me that it didn’t work for me and give constructive feedback. Then it’s up to them to decide if I post about it or not. I would be diplomatic and constructive in pointing out flaws, but usually they decline the review.

    If I’m reviewing something I purchased, I will usually only talk about positive experiences unless something is so horrible I feel like the public ought to know.

    Sarah, thanks for having me!


  7. Heidi @ GGIP says:

    Great question and answer. I am planning to do just a little reviewing on my blog and this is very helpful.

    Also, tidymom’s question was a great one! Thanks very much.


  8. Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates says:

    Great interview from an great blogger!


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